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“Good backpacker vibe” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Milimani Backpackers & Safari Centre

Milimani Backpackers & Safari Centre
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Milimani Backpackers & Safari Centre
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Milimani Road | P.O Box 21005-00505, Nairobi, Kenya   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #37 of 105 Specialty Lodging in Nairobi
Toronto, Canada
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Good backpacker vibe”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 19, 2011

I really enjoyed my stay at Milimani. Of all the hostels I stayed at in Africa, this was my favourite for chatting with other travellers. The beer is cheap, the food is good, and the rooms are ok.

They will hook you up with a (expensive) cab, or excursion. They will also hook you up with a bus to Arusha. I took it and it was great. Africa is a wild place if it's your first time. Be prepared to be blown away.

It does get quite cold at night so bring a warm sleeping bag. And bring earplugs for the various noises at night. The washrooms are pretty ghetto, but hey, it's a hostel in Africa.

The only really negative problem I witnessed was with the dog. My first night there a guy showeed up from Japan. He was just starting his trip. When he got there he leaned over to pet the dog and it bit him on the face. He had multiple puncture wounds, and a severly lacerated upper lip requiring stitches. Worst of all the owner said it was the 7th person it had attacked!

Go for a walk to town with a group. It's a pretty interesting experience. It's safe enough in the day, but you will be freaked out. At least I was.

Make sure you take a taxi here from the airport. I took the bus because it was way cheaper. But I was crapping my pants and then had to get a cab from downtown anyways.

Happy travels!!!

Room Tip: As always, look at your room before paying.
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  • Stayed May 2011, traveled solo
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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73 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (16)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
surrey, UK
Top Contributor
112 reviews 112 reviews
68 hotel reviews
Reviews in 66 cities Reviews in 66 cities
123 helpful votes 123 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 15, 2011

Firslty I have stayed here several times in the past 10 years and this is the 3rd owner Ive met.
This lady is making a real go of it and not drinking the profits away!! However it does mean that this place has changed alot. I guess it depends what you like....
Its busy constantly. Its difficult to get a room so book in advance
There are taxis coming and going at all hours - great if you want to get out!!
They organise many trips, safaris and taxis so thats helpful
Its a short walk into town - try it and dont be scared just careful
Security are helpful
Expensive washing service - $10 for one load, or depending who you pay....one lady wanted $1 per item!!
Internet is $1 per day....but they rarely change the password so it lasts days!!
The restaurant is slow but reasonably priced and they sell good food. Get your name on the breakfast list early. Its lovely to sit around the fire in the cooler evenings
They have built extra cabins - single and twin rooms, they have a a large tented dorm in the back garden, and several dorms inside. Inside was noisy throughout the night. i like the outside tented dorm with 12 beds in.
They have 4 showers - warm water is available. Toilets pretty clean
They have lots of staff working now so the place is cleaned regularly
Lounge area with tv and films

Ill be back!

My main bug bear was the amazing amount of signs with rules around the place. I think one with all the rules would be sufficient, maybe give a copy to each guest. I particuarly liked the one about not doing "local lady business" at this venue!!!

  • Stayed August 2011, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Calgary, Canada
1 review
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 3, 2011

I would like to warn people about Milimani Backpackers. It’s in the Lonely Planet Guidebook. As a hostel it is fine enough but I had a really negative experience with them. They have an area in the back corner next to the wall where people can camp. One evening I was lying down in my tent when a big thunderstorm came. The thunder was really close so I got out and went inside the hostel. Less than five minutes later I came back to check if water was getting in and I found my tent was covered in bricks. The wall had fallen on it. If I had been inside I would have died or been very seriously hurt.

My tent was destroyed and when I checked my new video camera I found the screen had been cracked. I found out later this was the 3rd time the wall had fallen and once before it had hit a tent but they still let people camp there.

I assumed Patricia, the owner, would replace or fix my tent and camera without any problem, just happy I was alive. But to my surprise she refused to pay a cent. After a heated argument they finally agreed to look for estimates. That was the beginning of a long fight to get some compensation. The played all kinds of games with me. They lied, they didn’t return my calls/messages/emails and they stalled me hoping I would give up. For awhile I stayed at the backpacker waiting for them and they refused to let me stay for free. In the end I finally got some cash four months later but only because I was so persistent. As for my tent they reluctantly gave me the cheapest old tent they had. It was useless against rain.

For this I would have to say do not stay at Milimani Backpackers.
I would recommend to stay at…

New Kenya Lodge (River Rd and Latema Rd)
-right in the center (close to cheap internet, Milimani charges 4X the price)
-lots of travellers
-cheaper
-actual hot showers (Milimani’s are hardly warm)
-offer cheaper safaris than Milimani and just as good

If you aren’t comfortable staying in the center then I would recommend
Upper Hill Backpackers (a bit far from town but very nice) or the Hostelling International Backpacker (near to Milimani)

Stayed February 2011, traveled solo
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Glasgow, United Kingdom
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 1, 2011

This was one of the worst places we stayed on a year-long trip through Africa. The dorms were cramped and tatty, the doors didn't lock, there weren't any mosquito nets in our room, the restaurant was poor and over-priced, we were woken several times in the night by large religious youth groups praying and singing, and the staff were rude and clueless. A truly dreadful place - don't do it.

  • Stayed December 2010, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed June 16, 2011

Milimani has a number of good points, but an equal number of bad points which they need to rectify. Amongst other things:

Good Points:
- Amazingly friendly and helpful staff
- Reasonably-priced beer and food
- Good atmosphere

Bad Points:
- Very Noisy (especially the guard dog who barks all night, and the birds screeching every morning)
- Beds a bit tatty, mozzie nets with A LOT of holes
- Not the cleanest place (especially the showers, some of which were disgusting), needs a bit of an overhaul.

However as a place to crash in Nairobi it's OK and reasonable value (Ksh1,000 [£7] when we went).

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with friends
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Istanbul, Turkey
Senior Contributor
48 reviews 48 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 33 cities Reviews in 33 cities
35 helpful votes 35 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 1, 2011

Small and clean hostel. Threre is a diffirent kind of room, single, double or dorm. All of them are cheap and beautifull. Hostel has a garden and the restaurant is in the garden. I liked the talking to other young tourists all over the world in the gardens evening.

Stayed December 2010, traveled solo
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
23 hotel reviews
Reviews in 23 cities Reviews in 23 cities
23 helpful votes 23 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2011

It is very cold at night
the staff is nice but the girl who worked when i arrived did not know anything about the place or about Nairobi
the internet was always down
i bought breakfast there in the morning and it was awful
the sheets were dirty
there is no hot water even though they say there is and there is a switch to turn on for hot water, it doesn't work

  • Stayed February 2011, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Milimani Backpackers & Safari Centre

Address: Milimani Road | P.O Box 21005-00505, Nairobi, Kenya
Location: Kenya > Nairobi
Amenities:
Restaurant
Hotel Style:
Ranked #37 of 105 Specialty Lodging in Nairobi
Number of rooms: 23
Also Known As:
Milimani Backpackers & Safari Centre Hotel Nairobi
Milimani Backpackers And Safari Centre

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